Saturday, December 18, 2004

Dog Food Salesmen

So the yankees got rid of radio announcer Charley Steiner, Mr. "I'll Just Let You Figure Out What's Happening, Even Though You Can't See What's Going On." Or he bolted on his own, I don't know. Either way, it's a great day for anyone who ever listens to the yanks on radio. But this move is completely negated by the fact that filling in for the boob will be the traitor herslef, Suzyn Waldman.

As a reporter, she's pretty good. When she occasionally hosts a show on the FAN, she's very good. But this woman has absolutely no idea how to call a baseball game. On TV, anyway. Maybe she'll be better at it on radio, but I doubt it. I wonder why they think anyone with baseball reporting experience can just step in as an announcer. Some people just don't have a knack for it. I would say that I hope this opportunity makes her better at announcing, as maybe since she works in a field dominated by men, she just hasn't been given enough chances to hone her (non-) skills. But I won't because she was born and raised a Red Sox fan, but got a job with the yanks, and went right up the ladder to Steinbrenner lackey. Pathetic. She once sang "Take Me Out To The Ballgame," I think, on the Forever Fenway video from the eighties. She had a dog named Fenway. But I guess when a person is offered a certain amount of money, they'll gladly go against everything they stand for to get their hands on that dough. This is a perfect example of why we shouldn't make fun of ballplayers for going after money if we do the same thing ourselves. Just because they're dealing with larger amounts of money than we ever would, doesn't mean they should be thought of any differently than the dog food salesman who switches companies because he's offered a nickel more from another company, despite having been treated great for years by the original company.

I'll never forget when the A's were up 2-0 on the yanks a few years ago (the year when Jeter made that fundamentally sound play, almost getting the guy at the plate, but he was called out). Waldman was on the FAN, and some Sox fans had called up, making fun of the yanks, who looked doomed. Suzyn was so mad, saying, "Y'know, just because another team loses, that doesn't make your team better!" I was like, Come on Suzyn, don't pretend you don't know what it's like to be a Red Sox fan. Terrible job.

And Sean McDonough is not with the Sox anymore. I noticed how the Unclean White Lab didn't give this headline status, then told how hardly anybody wrote to him about it, implying that nobody cares about the bald one. Hmmm, maybe that's because you didn't tell anyone about it. Anyway, I like McDonough from back in the days when I used to get the TV-38 games on the CT affiliate. Too bad he got fazed out.

I also noticed that there's no mention of TV and radio announcers on the MLB web sites anymore. I guess they figure they'll lose business by telling you how to see and hear games in places other than MLB.TV and Gameday Audio. I hate this whole MLB conformity/monopoly thing. All the teams should have they're own web sites like they used to. I hate clothes and logos that are all the same, with the team name the only thing that changes. It's all real dumb.

I propose a rogue baseball league. It involves the visiting team running the bases clockwise. And third base (or first for the visitors) acts as home plate. So you run straight through third into the dugout to score. Also, this makes first and third basemen also have to wear catchers' gear, and left handed players would be able to play a lot more positions in the field. Just ignore me.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

For Tradition's Sake

What the hell did Pedro say at the press conference today? There was this one line, after he was asked about money, which got replayed on several sports reports, where Pedro said, "I've been a millionaire since I was 23. I was already a millionaire when I got to Boston. So don't think it's a dump in the street..."


And after he said it, all the reports broke into laughter. All I can think of is that he was saying "bump in the street," like "bump in the road." But what sense does that make? And if he did say that, why did everybody bust out laughing?

Somebody clear that up for me, please.

I'm afraid the New York media (and therefore the New York fans, and, all of baseball)will soon discover that Pedro is an awesome, fun-lovin' guy, who's one of the craftiest, smartest pitchers of all-time, and not an A-hole who "can't beat the yanks." And they'll assume he must have changed into a "new Pedro," when we've known all along how great he his. Except for those of us who have tried so hard to run him out of town. I heard Shaughnessy on 1050 ESPN radio saying how he doesn't know how Pedro could leave the "cushy existence" he had in Boston. I don't know, maybe he read the papers, or worse yet, got a glimpse of boston burnt dogs or tree frogs or skirt hogs or whatever. What's not brought up on that site, by the way, is how Pedro's initial statement in the Mike & the Mad Dog interview was to say how much he loved the Boston fans and how we'll always have a place in his heart.

The 'Big Mullett to the yanks' deal is not official yet, but if it is, good to see the yanks continue to give up prospects.

I met Chan at the Westchester Mall (it's roughly halfway from my area to his area) tonight for our annual "Try To Do Christmas Shopping But Not Get Much Done Except Buy Pyromania On CD For Myself Because I Only Have It On Tape And Vinyl" trip.

It's a weird tradition. It started when Chan moved down to southern Westcheter after college, and we'd meet up to hang out, while getting some shopping out of the way. Last year was the year I realized that we've been doing the same thing for a bunch of years, therefore, we've got a tradition going. So then I got all excited for it, totally over-hyping it in my head. Which lead, of course, to the trip being kind of a disappointment last year. But nonetheless, the tradition continued this year, on the downside of it's once promising career. I bought two things for myself, one thing for other people. Like I told Chan, I can't get anything done unless I know it's the last minute. Also, this is the first Christmas of the millennium where I've been girlfriend-less, so that takes away about 80% of my shopping list. Part of me is relieved to know I don't have to go to Pottery Barn or Brookstone or Brooks Brothers or Crate & Barrel or the Craft Basket or Old Navy or the Gap or Moisturizer Emporium or Shampoo Shack or Fragrance Hut. In fact, I don't have to go to Bed, Bath OR Beyond. But another part of me misses draggin' Chan into Conditioner Corners, so I wouldn't be embarassed to talk to the supermodel-type behind the counter about what my girlfriend likes in a conditioner. It would make me feel good I guess, or even proud of myself, not because I was buying material things for my sig. other, but because I was doing something that I probably just wouldn't do for anyone else. I guess the harsh reality of all of this is, I lost Nomar, Pedro, and my girlfriend in the same year, as well as two friends who actually died, as opposed to just going somewhere else. I've said it before: Boy, did the Sox pick the right year to win the World Series. Otherwise I might be talking to you all from the great internet in the sky right now.

There were lots of Vinnys and Anthonys at the mall in their yankee jackets. My latest thing is to put a big smile on my face the second I see a yankee fan, so in that split second where they look at me before looking away, they'll know that I know that they know that I know that they know....

World Champs.

[Come on, you know how all those Long Island/Bronx/Westchester "yaaankees baby"-style guys with moustaches are always named Vinny or Anthony--not an Italian stereotype. I am part Italian. My great uncle's name is actually Guido.]

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

"The Streak"

Wow. The Silva-Toothed Hound is on fire! As soon as I saw on his site that Renteria was returning to the Cards (thanks to the awesomely clever "Not In The Cards" headline), I pretty much knew, if nothing else, that Edgar WASN'T going back to St. Louis. Sure enough, ten minutes later, it was "Welcome to Edgartown," signifying the Red Sox had signed Renteria. The inaccuracy streak continues. He's uncanny! I wanna go to the casino and stand next to this guy at the roulette table and just bet red whenever he bets black. Donde esta la renteria?...Where is the shortstop? By the way, I had to google "Edgartown," although I kind of figured it was a Mass thing. Is the Edgartown Ferry like the Staten Island Ferry of Boston or something?

What's even funnier is that the source of the incorrect info was the St. Louis version of dirtdogs: Some dudes who say that their inside source told them something that turns out to be false. Only they pay off for their mistakes! If Mud Pup played by these rules, we'd be owed millions! I want my money back! A-Rod never really wore that red suit and Red Sox hat!

And why is it that the brown man who helped bring the Red Sox a World Championship gets treated like crap and called a bitch, but the white trash guy who helped bring the yankees a World Championship and said he wanted to blow up Fenway Park gets happily welcomed aboard? This is total bostondirtdogpoop.

yankee fans are so jealous today. They all put on this facade of "I'm so happy the Mets got this scumbag who's not good anymore, and Bawston lost the great Pedro!" (notice how they've got it so the Mets got a bad player and Sox lost a great one, but its the same guy.) But in reality, you know they'd all LOVE to have Pedro, and not only did they not get him, but their "real" rival (depending on the day) now has him. So now the Red Sox and Mets could end up being better than them. They are acting confident, but trust me, the Empire State Building jump patrol is on full alert tonight.

Mike & the Mad Dog had their big 15th anniversary party tonight. Torre was on and basically said, If you look at my record before I came here (to where the good players were), it was nothing.

So he knows.

And Kay today, (also mega-jealous of the Mets, whose staff is way better than the yanks, who recently committed the biggest choke job of all time and watched as the Red Sox won the World Series, although he claims he never wanted Pedro for his team, (whoops, I mean the yanks, he's a "neutral" fan) but he was lying) was joking that the Mets signed the "Fat Elvis." He said other things, his usual crap-- guaranteeing Pedro will break down. Man, I am so psyched to see Pedro do great for the Mets, and just shut all those yankee fans up. Because they REALLY don't like it when good things happen for the Mets.

Saw the Pixies in Manhattan last night. Wish everyone I know could've been there. Glad I got a chance to at least see the reunited version of this awesome, highly influential group. NYC was so frigid last night (we parked 20 blocks from the venue, and I only had my sweatjacket), that me and my friend who went with me decided that we'd rather be shot than have to lay down on the sidewalk. I guess that doesn't make sense unless I preface it with something. So... while walking up 11th Avenue, I thought I heard gunshots. I said, "If someone is shooting at us, rather than hit the freezing deck, I'll just take my chances that the bullets will miss me."

When Anthony commented on my terrible decision to not wear a heavy coat, this funny exchange took place:

Anthony: "How could you not bring a coat??"

Me: "Because my girlfriend broke up with me, so there's no one there to take care of me and tell me when to bundle up."

Anthony: "You're a grown adult!"

Me: "Ha!"

At this point, though, I think I've crossed the line where I've gotta go for the "coatless" winter. (Wait--winter hasn't even started yet.) I did it in, like, '96-'97 I think. I think it makes you healthier. Yeah. Hold on while I blow my nose for the one thousandth time today...

I saw three Red Sox hats at the show, zero yankee hats. Pixies fans are intelligent folk.

Monday, December 13, 2004

'Underwhelming' Is One Word

"How much would you play to have a Don Orsillo call of the World Series final out on file over Joe Castig's under whelming call (which was more fitting for a Twins win in June)?"

Ripping the man whose voice has comforted me almost every summer night since I was seven years old? This time it's personal. (Like Jaws the Revenge--although I always thought they should've said "sharkal.")

The man was probably in a state of shock at the time, like the rest of us were. We should be glad he got any words out at all. I think it was a fine call. He could've planned some cheesy line ahead of time, but he just did what came naturally. And he said what needed to be said.

By the way, why the hell am I still reading BDD? Everything he reports turns out to be the exact opposite of what ends up happening. The other day I wrote how I hoped his source that said Tek and Pedro would be signing soon wasn't the same one who said Pavano was on his way to Philly. I was kind of joking, because I was so sure Pedro was gonna sign with us, but I should have known. Now the "bitch," as the barking grand wizard called him, is going to the Mets. (Although as of midnight, there's still no official word; just that "baseball officials" say this is happening. Are these the same officials who said the Renteria deal was done?)

Who knows. And I've been reading this crazy conspiracy theory on SoSH. It's become a very odd night. And since the thread started, the Dirty Doggy has linked to it, and is almost acting like it's a real thing. I'm so confused. What the hell is going on?

Anyway, I was having a good day before everything turned weird. First I worked on an upcoming book at work today called "Yankees Suck!" Cheesy at times, but good. I thought, You know you have a good job when your boss purposely gives you "Yankees Suck!" to work on, with a note on it that says, "I knew you'd enjoy this!" Especially when they should be giving people books that are the opposite of their interests, so they'll actually get some work done.

Then I went outside for a break, and I saw an old truck driver. (The guy was old, not the truck). He saw my Sox hat and said, "Go Red Sox." Always suspicious of possible sarcastic yankee fans, I just kind of nodded and said "All riiight!" But he started a conversation. "I don't follow baseball that much, but yankee fans are just the worst people there are. Them and Cowboy fans." Preach on, brother Beavis, I thought. He went on to talk about how bad Steinbrenner was, and how him and his money are ruinning sports. It was great to meet a smart person out of the blue like that.

So it was a pretty anti-yankee day. And I guess if Pedro does become Shea-dro, well at least he's still a rival of the yanks. I'd go see him at Shea. It's really crappy that he won't be there on Opening Day to get his ring. You'd think he'd want to stay just for that. Oh well. It's not official yet. And hey, Just Dessert Dogs says it's official, so it's probably not happening. But we'll see.

Sunday, December 12, 2004

Happy To Be Alive

That's the feeling I get when I see a Wes Anderson movie. It never fails.

I went to NYC on Friday to see The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. I was highly impressed. Wes just keeps topping himself. How he can dream up these scenarios and characters is beyond me. And to be able to get the great Bill Murray to play these incredible roles is probably leaving a lot of other directors a little bit jealous.

I'm not gonna get into the details of the story itself, esepecially since this movie doesn't open nationwide until Christmas. But I'll just say that if you liked the other Anderson movies, I don't see how you can't like this one. It's got plenty of Wes' trademarks-- two dudes in love with one woman, attempted uniformity among wildly different personalities, unorthodox sets, awesome soundtrack, and score by Mark Mothersbaugh. The soundtrack consists of mostly David Bowie tunes, with an odd but beautiful twist on many of them, done in a way that connects the audience with the movie, thanks to a guy named Seo Jorge. And Mothersbaugh, who's been making amazing music in one way or another for decades, switched things up a little for this movie, going the Casio sounding route.

A newer Anderson technique is having a whole world of weirdly animated creatures throughout the film. These colorful animals are the work of Henry Selick.

There are a lot of funny characters. Willem DaFoe is great, so is Murray, Owen Wilson, and Bud Cort. Anjelica Huston, Cate Blanchett, and Jeff Goldblum added fine defense for Ridgefield Bank...whoops, I just slipped into one of my mom's old Little League write-ups, where she'd throw in every player's name, citing solid defense (meaning they played the mandatory three innings but didn't get a hit). But that's not to say those three actors weren't good.

I give this movie four Leskanics. And considering I was watching it from the third row, to the far right of the screen, looking straight up, that's pretty good. I can't wait to see this movie from a better angle.

I also saw Brian Regan the night before at Caroline's. An awesome comedian. Check into his work.

As promised, I will now update you on my two nights in NYC on the Red Sox fan count. Well, I didn't see any, but it was raining both nights, so hats and shirts were all covered up, plus the walking around time was limited to dashing from car to club/theater and back. (That's right, I bring my car into the city.) But I'm tellin' you, go on a clear weekend day, walk around for a while, and you'll see 'em all over the place.

I also finally saw Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. It (borderline) blew my mind. But Charlie Kaufman usually does that to me. I'm mad at myself for forgetting to mention him in my recent post about movies.

Then I woke up early on Saturday, trying for the Sox Pack that includes Opening Day. Didn't get through. But for my renewed 10th Man Plan, I'm getting the second game of the opening series. So that'll be cool. Hey, if anyone wants to trade me Opening Day tix for my Wednesday tix, let me know. You know, if you'd rather go to a far-less desired game than the one you already have tickets to.

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